Destinations & Attractions in Zululand, in Durban

Zululand Destinations & Attractions

The gorgeous region of Zululand is situated in the area extending from just above Dolphin Coast to Richard’s Bay. Its reaches stretch between the magnificent blue of the Indian Ocean to the inland Pongola. Zululand is characterised by green hills that tumble peacefully across the landscape, dense forests and grasslands that extend as far as the eye can see. Mangrove swamps and tranquil lagoons provide an idyllic backdrop to your break away.

Its natural splendour is, without a doubt, breath-taking. But Zululand is also acclaimed for its rich culture and heritage. The Zulu nation has been known for their strength for centuries, and it is this strength that enabled them to fight fierce battles against the English colonialists for the land. Zululand lies on the borders of many of the area’s most significant battlefields, which are simultaneously haunting and fascinating.

Due to the faunal and floral abundance of the area, nature reserves and parks are plentiful. These include Siyaya Coastal Park, Umlalazi Nature Reserve, Amatikulu Nature Reserve, Dlinza Forest Nature Reserve, Enseleni Nature Reserve, Ntendeka Wilderness Area, and Ongoye Forest Nature Reserve. The Zululand Birding Route is the proud home of more than 650 different avian species. There are 14 local routes, including Dlinza. Many of these parks offer fabulous hiking, walking and cycling trails as well. Alternatively, visitors can embark on an exciting game drive to see the antelope, mammals, reptiles, and hunters that call this home.

For a peek into the modern Zulu culture, there are formal township tours. This immerses visitors into the culture and lifestyle of locals. Most tours consist of a historical element, a visit to a traditional medicine shop or healer, and refreshments at the shebeen (an informal pub in which locals gather and enjoy traditional or commercial drinks).

The Hluhluwe Umfolozi Game Reserve is likely one of the area’s most significant attractions. It was established well over a century ago and is home to the Big 5. There are a number of different packages available for guided safaris, giving visitors the opportunity to see as much of the magnificence of Africa as possible.

Tourists that enjoy the historical aspect of a destination are invited to take the Route 66 Zululand Heritage Route. This route explores towns that are, perhaps, a little less well known, giving a very interesting perspective on the history of the Zululand Region.

Paulpietersburg is a historical town that is known and loved for its sulphur spring, which has proven therapeutic qualities. It is also located along the Battlefields Route. Other significant towns in Zululand include Hluhluwe, Eshowe, Richards Bay, Ulundi and Vryheid.

AmaZulu Game Reserve

The AmaZulu Game Reserve has a particularly interesting variety of ecosystems. This means that it is home to a huge array of wildlife, including the Big Five (lions, leopards, buffalos, elephants and rhinos). This landscape ...

Babanango

In the northern reaches of Zululand is the little town of Babanango en route to Dundee on the R68. An unusual name, Babanango translates as ‘Father there she is’ - ‘Ubaba, nangu’ - and evidently refers to a small child who was ...

Empangeni

Empangeni, a town about 160 km from Durban on the R34 just off the N2, is positioned in the hilly countryside of the Uthungulu district. The area around Empangeni brings to mind sugarcane plantations and hot, sticky, languid ...

Eshowe

Eshowe is the first place in the Zululand of yesteryear that was colonised by the European settlers. In addition to its history, which is best experienced by touring the battlefields of the region, Eshowe is also very beautiful ...

Gingindlovu

Originally named Gingindlovu, meaning swallower of the Elephant in Zulu, by Cetshwayo when he won the struggle with his brother Mbulazi over the Zulu throne, Gingindlovu is also on the Battlefields Route in northern Zululand. ...

Hlomohlomo

The inland farm country of KwaZulu-Natal, on the east coast of South Africa, is wonderfully pretty in its landscapes. This area offers local travellers and tourists alike the prime opportunity to bask in the untainted loveliness ...

Hluhluwe

Hluhluwe may be a small village, but it is the famous home of the Hluhluwe Umfolozi Game Reserve, which is one of the most beautiful and best-stocked reserves in southern Africa. The area is a scenic wonder, but is also ...

Isandlwana

Isandlwana marks the site of one of the bloodiest defeats of the British by the local Zulu tribes. Still, thousands of soldiers on both sides were killed. Today, this is a historical site that allows visitors to take a peek into ...

Jozini

The small town of Jozini is home to the enormous Jozini Dam. The naturally abundant surrounds invite a host of exciting animals to share this habitat, including those that live off the dam, such as hippos and crocodiles ...

Kuleni Game Park

The Kuleni Game Park is centrally situated and is close to beaches, game reserves and wetlands. This peaceful retreat showcases the fauna and flora of KwaZulu-Natal, and invites locals and visitors to enjoy its natural wealth ...

Kwambonambi

Lying inland of Richards Bay in a north westernly direction, Kwambonambi, or Kwa Mbonambi as it's sometimes written, is situated part way between Empangeni and St Lucia on the N2 that passes through these northern reaches of ...

Louwsburg

Louwsburg is about three hours’ drive from Durban. This is a small, rural town that remains a veritable farming community. It is surrounded by pretty landscapes, some of which accommodate fabulous game reserves ...

Magudu

Set in the far north western reaches of KwaZulu-Natal, Magudu lies between the Pongolapoort Dam and the Ithala Game Reserve in the heart of the rolling hills of Uphongolo Rural in Zululand. Surrounding the rural town of Magudu ...

Meerensee

The attractive Meerensee is flanked by the ocean and a picturesque lake. It is green and fertile, quiet and peaceful. This is the ideal combination for an escape from the hustle and bustle of city living ...

Melmoth

Melmoth, known as the gateway to the Zulu Highlands, is a picturesque, little town just 200 km north east of Durban and 90 km from the coastal town of Mtunzini. Referred to, in the SA edition of Trivial Pursuit, as having the ...

Monzi

The major attraction to staying in Monzi is its proximity to the iSimangaliso Wetland Park World Heritage Site (formerly known as the Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park), but more commonly known simply as St Lucia. Monzi lies ...

Mtunzini

Mtunzini is perfectly perched on a coastal hill. This means glorious views and a unique topography that only adds to its intrigue. The town and its surrounds have long been recognised as important conservation areas and are a ...

Nongoma

Nongoma, considered one of the busiest little towns in rural KwaZulu Natal, lies north west of Hluhluwe and is fast becoming a major tourist attraction, thanks to King Goodwill Zwelethini, who makes Nongoma his home. Derived ...

Paulpietersburg

Paulpietersburg is conveniently situated between Durban and Johannesburg. So, although it is a small, quiet town, it is centrally situated and easily accessible. Thanks to its positioning, with the Dumbe Mountain Range as its ...

Pongola

Nestled at the foot of the majestic Lebombo Mountain Range, Pongola is a small town that is filled to the brim with colonial and traditional history. Its landscape is defined by game reserves, sugarcane fields and fruit orchards, ...

Pongola Nature Reserve

The Pongola Game Reserve is the oldest reserve in the country and is home to a huge variety of animals – some endangered and rare. In addition to its focus on animal conservation, this reserve is also committed to educating and ...

Pongolapoort

Pongolapoort is one of the small, pretty towns on the Jozini Dam’s banks. Being far away from the hub of the city, it is a serene getaway in which the wonders of the South African bushveld can be enjoyed unhindered ...

Richards Bay

Richards Bay is a harbour town that is conveniently close to Durban and relatively near to Johannesburg. It was developed extensively during the 70’s, but remains a scenic little coastal hub. Like Durban, it is known for its ...

Riverview

In the midst of Zululand, just south of Mtubatuba, lies the little village of Riverview, sometimes written also as River View. The little town is convenient for a number of reasons, not least because it lies just east of the N2, ...

Rorkes Drift

Rorke’s Drift is a rocky outcrop that links Natal and Zululand over the Buffalo River. The surrounding landscapes are the ultimate in unspoilt beauty, and are sure to impress even the most seasoned of travellers and outdoorsmen ...

Ubombo

Set in the heart of Maputaland, Ubombo lies in the midst of the Lebombo Mountains between the Mkuze Game Reserve and the Pongolapoort or Jozini Dam. It is an ideal spot at which to stopover or from which to explore the area - ...

Ulundi

The town of Ulundi, in the heart of Zululand, is set among majestic hills and the rugged valleys of the White Umfolozi River. The former capital of the Zulu Kingdom, Ulundi straddles Route 66, between Nongoma and Melmoth. ...

Vryheid

Vryheid is significant for many reasons, not least of all its close proximity to the battlefields (particularly the site of the Battle of Blood River). Its historical import is complemented by wetlands and forests (timber ...
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